Finding and moving off screen applications in Gnome 3/Ubuntu 17.10

I have a strange problem in the gnew gnome windows manager that ships with Ubuntu 17.10: on my three-monitor desktop, application windows occasionally open off screen. I.e. in the following screen shot, they open partially or entirely in the space marked “invisible window” to the left or right of the tall window.

To make matters worse, applications that open like this do it all the time. I.e. Read the rest of this entry »


Talkin’ ’bout my g- g- greatest generation? The Long November (Nablo, 1946)

The Long November is a novel about World War II by Canadian author James Benson Nablo.

The basic plot is that Joey Mack, a not-quite-so-young canadian soldier is reflecting on his life while lying wounded in Italy. His life runs from rum-running in the 1920s through mining, the depression, and then the war. The leitmotif in all his thought is Steffi, the young girl from a rich family of whose affection he has spent his life trying to deserve.

The novel really isn’t that well written. Or rather it is somewhat pretentiously written as a long first person interior monologue. But it is remarkable as a corrective on post-war “Greatest Generation” approaches to the WWII generation. Read the rest of this entry »


An interesting issue with the *nix ls command, or, why you should never begin a filename with a hyphen

In which I discover an odd error using ls and learn how to solve it.


How to fix tables that run off the page in Google Docs

Here’s a problem I wasn’t able to find a solution online to…

The Problem

Sometimes, when you import a document into Google Doc from a different wordprocessor, you can end up with the problem that the table is wider than the page. The following is an example:

The problem is that there is nothing to grab on the top ribbon to pull the edge of the table back. If the problem was the internal alignment of the columns, then you could use a slider in the ribbon bar:

But since there isn’t one, then there’s nothing to grab.

The solution

The solution is to go to Table>Table Properties and then uncheck the column width button. Read the rest of this entry »


Master slides in Libreoffice reminders

Some quick reminders for my own use about master slides in Office

Turn on default sections

Impress master slides come with some sections built in (e.g. slide count, date, etc.). But by default these sections don’t appear unless you turn them on.

To turn them on:

  • Insert > Header/Footer > make sure the relevant section is checked in the dialogue that opens.

Read the rest of this entry »

The latest trends in communication your research: Force11 Scholarly Communication Institute (July 31-Aug 4, 2017)

The latest trends in communication your research: Force11 Scholarly Communication Institute (July 31-Aug 4, 2017)

The Force11 Scholarly Communications Institute (FSCI) is a week-long intensive summer training program in the latest trends in research and data publication (http://www.force11.org/fsci). Come learn how you can increase your impact and profile from leading Scholarly Communication researchers.

When: July 31 – August 4, 2017
Where: University of California, San Diego (La Jolla, CA)
Early bird: Register before July 8, 2017 to receive a discount

The FORCE11 Scholarly Communications Institute at the University of California, San Diego is a week long summer training course, incorporating intensive coursework, seminar participation, group activities, lectures and hands-on training. Participants will attend courses taught by world-wide leading experts in scholarly communications. Participants will also have the opportunity to discuss the latest trends and gain expertise i Read the rest of this entry »


The latest trends in communication your research: Force11 Scholarly Communication Institute (July 31-Aug 4, 2017)

The latest trends in communication your research: Force11 Scholarly Communication Institute (July 31-Aug 4, 2017)

The Force11 Scholarly Communications Institute (FSCI) is a week-long intensive summer training program in the latest trends in research and data publication (http://www.force11.org/fsci). Come learn how you can increase your impact and profile from leading Scholarly Communication researchers.

When: July 31 – August 4, 2017
Where: University of California, San Diego (La Jolla, CA)
Early bird: Register before July 8, 2017 to receive a discount

The FORCE11 Scholarly Communications Institute at the University of California, San Diego is a week long summer training course, incorporating intensive coursework, seminar participation, group activities, lectures and hands-on training. Participants will attend courses taught by world-wide leading experts in scholarly communications. Participants will also have the opportunity to discuss the latest trends and gain expertise i Read the rest of this entry »


Linux/Chrome on Chromebook using Crouton

There are many articles about this on the web. This is just a reminder to me as to what I’ve been doing.

Change boot to developer mode

Doing the following deletes all local data on your system. You can always reinstall the Operating System (Chrome seems to do that remotely). But your data is wiped after you do this.

  • Hold down the ESC + ↻ (refresh) key (the refresh key is where F3 would be on a normal keyboard)
  • While holding them down push the ⏽ (power) key (top right corner).
  • Read the rest of this entry »

How to open the container folder for a Google Doc

I quite like using Google Docs. I’m less crazy about Google Drive.

One of the common issues I have with the relationship between the two comes when I am given the direct link to a Google Doc or Sheet as part of a project. I often want to access (or start) other documents in that same folder. But until now I never knew how to find that folder (everything I learned comes from this page).

It turns out that all you need to do is click on the little folder icon beside the file name (highlighted in yellow in the following image):

When you do this, a dialogue opens up with a “Move” button. Read the rest of this entry »


Installing Vidyo on Ubuntu 16.10

I need to use Vidyo conferencing software for some projects I’m on. Because I just reinstalled Ubuntu 16.04, I needed to reinstall the Vidyo desktop.

This is not easy, since the installation file Vidyo directs you to contains a dependency that is not available on Ubuntu 16.10 (libqt4-gui).

There are various solutions out there, though I was not able to get the one proposed by Vidyo itself to work.

The one that did work for me is on the CERN site. Read the rest of this entry »


Date-time missing from menu bar (Ubuntu 16.10)

When I reinstalled Ubuntu 16.10 today, the date and time wasn’t showing up in the menu bar at the top of Unity (I’m going to miss it now that they are planning to stop supporting it in 17.10).

When I clicked on System and Date and Time, everything was correctly set.

The solution comes from here

sudo apt-get install indicator-datetime
sudo dpkg-reconfigure --frontend noninteractive tzdata
sudo killall unity-panel-service

Of these, really only the last was necessary in my case: the dialogue showed that it was up-to-date and when I rant the apt-get install is was clearly already installed.

tags: Read the rest of this entry »


Date-time missing from menu bar (Ubuntu 16.10)

When I reinstalled Ubuntu 16.10 today, the date and time wasn’t showing up in the menu bar at the top of Unity (I’m going to miss it now that they are planning to stop supporting it in 17.10).

When I clicked on System and Date and Time, everything was correctly set.

The solution comes from here

sudo apt-get install indicator-datetime
sudo dpkg-reconfigure --frontend noninteractive tzdata
sudo killall unity-panel-service

Of these, really only the last was necessary in my case: the dialogue showed that it was up-to-date and when I rant the apt-get install is was clearly already installed.

tags: Read the rest of this entry »


Displaylink and Ubuntu 16.10 and 17.04

I have a new supercool three screen setup in my office.

To run this, I am using two cables: A old-style displayport cable to the middle screen, and HDMI cables, via a Dell USB3 Docking station, to the side screens.

Running screens via a USB docking station requires me to use DisplayLink. Fortunately, Displaylink have an Ubuntu driver. Unfortunately, this doesn’t seem to work with 17.04 and getting it to work well with 16.10 LTS requires a little fiddling. Read the rest of this entry »


Updating Textpattern and Solving a Rewrite Problem

Just updated my CMS (Textpattern) to the latest version (6.4.2). I had to because the University just updated the PHP on the server and this broke the old install.

Everything worked great except for one thing: I could get it to work if I put the full URL to the index page in (i.e. http://people.uleth.ca/~daniel. Read the rest of this entry »


Galbraith on why Universities should be contentious places [1]

Good universities have always been places of contention and dispute… And the best universities in their greatest phase have always been places of the most energetic and uninhibited contention. That is because, in great universities, ideas are important and issues are taken seriously and scholars are not cowards—and no one is so silly as to suppose there is such a think as orderly, well-regulated debate which, in the manner of a motion picture script, can be carefully tailored in advance to the taste of the audience and the prejudices of the censors.

Poor universities composed of craven men are inevitably very orderly places and bad universities have the silence and tranquility of the desert.

University of California. 1967. “Warren Joins Others in Urging Greater Understanding of UC, Academic Freedom.” University Bulletin: A Weekly Bulletin for the Staff of the University of California, May 8. 161

Read the rest of this entry »
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